Howl's license itself is a simple 3-clause BSD license, but the license
of mDNSresponder which it requires is Apple's APSL, which is held by
Debian to be at least a GPL-incompatible, if not non-free license:
Hence mDNSresponder is likely to be removed from Debian, and certainly
will not be distributed in a Debian release, rendering Howl rather useless.
Dependencies on Howl have already been removed from GNOME, and people
are instead planning to use Avahi, which is already just as usable as
Howl is, appears to have a few more features such as using D-Bus to
communicate with the system's mDNS responder, and is entirely GPL or
From a Debian perspective, I'd be a lot happier to see Gaim using Avahi
rather than Howl. The APIs are similar, so changing now should not be
too difficult. In the meantime, no Bonjour for Debian... :(
Andy Moran wrote:
> With the bonjour plugin nearing completion
> (http://gaim.sourceforge.net/summerofcode/juanjo/) I was wondering what
> the plans were for dealing with the Howl dependency. Will there be a
> separate Gaim RPM which depends on Howl like silc, or will the plugin be
> bundled separately, or will the main Gaim builds depend on it?
> Also, I know Howl exists for Windows as well. Will the Windows gaim
> users get Bonjour-enabled builds as well? I don't think they currently
> get the silc builds.